Lennox Lewis: David Price needs to be 'nasty' in the ring

Lennox Lewis believes David Price can become a world champion, but must learn to "be mean and nasty" in the ring.

The 29-year-old heavyweight was knocked out by Tony Thompson in February, his first loss in 16 professional bouts.

The Briton has spent three weeks at a training camp with Lewis in Toronto as part of his preparation for a rematch with the veteran American on 6 July.

"David is a good guy, maybe too much of a good guy. I'm going to get some nastiness in him," said Lewis.

"The physical aspect, the determination, the desire - he's got all that. I'm going to get him mean.

BBC North West Tonight's Stuart Pollitt spent time with David Price and Lennox Lewis during their training camp in Canada:

"Buried deep inside a suburban gym in Mississauga near Toronto - in a darkened room nicknamed 'The Dungeon' - the past and possibly the future of British heavyweight boxing were in the ring together.

"Lewis advised, cajoled and encouraged. He had the pads on and was ducking and weaving. Price soaked up every piece of advice from the last undisputed world heavyweight champion.

"The technical advice and the strength work that has taken place over the last three weeks cannot fail to help Price in his rematch with Thompson.

"But the most important thing this camp appears to have given him is belief.

"The mere fact that Lewis believed in Price enough to offer his help has, in a stroke, restored Price's confidence.

"And, smiling throughout, the work appears to have rekindled Lewis's love of the sport. British heavyweight boxing is likely to reap the rewards."

"He needs to be a little bit meaner out there because these guys are trying to take his head off. They're trying to hurt him and he can't be letting that happen. He has to fight back and be a little nasty."

Former undisputed world heavyweight champion Lewis contacted Price via Twitter following his second-round defeat by Thompson earlier this year.

The 2008 Olympic bronze medallist said receiving the support of one of his idols was a huge lift after the most disappointing night of his career to date.

Liverpool-born Price told BBC North West Tonight: "It still feels a bit surreal at times that we're hanging out with Lennox Lewis - he was my boxing hero.

"After I lost my last fight, I received a message of support from Lennox on Twitter. He left me his phone number and he offered to help me out. It was a no-brainer to accept.

"He wouldn't give up his time if he didn't believe I can go on to good things. He knows what it takes and he obviously thinks I've got what it takes, so that's been a massive encouragement."

And Price is confident of repairing the damage of February's loss to 41-year-old Thompson, a defeat that delayed his route to a world title shot, when the pair meet again in Liverpool.

"The hard work is going to pay off on 6 July," he added. "I've always worked hard in the gym anyway and I'm experienced enough to know that preparation is massive, but this has taken it up a notch.

"Lennox has been there and done it at the highest level. He's shown me what it takes to get there. I was confident of avenging it [the defeat by Thompson] on my own, but this has given me a massive advantage. It has definitely been worthwhile."